Frequently Asked Questions

Hypnosis is possibly as old as mankind. The old myths and misconceptions about hypnosis have given way to proven, scientifically sound applications. Today hypnosis is being used in a variety of different fields including: medicine, education, law enforcement, professional sports, and dentistry. Most people have misconceptions about the positive results that can be achieved by a professionally trained hypnotist. We would like to dispel some of the myths and misconceptions and explain how hypnosis really works and what kind of results you can expect.

What is hypnosis?

Hypnosis is a very normal and natural altered state of consciousness (an altered state of awareness), one we all experience from time to time in which the mind remains clear, alert and focused on something. Have you ever "become really absorbed" while watching TV? Or driven to work on "auto pilot?" That's the same kind of altered state as hypnosis and it's actually very normal and very pleasant. Some people ask if they've really been hypnotized, just because it feels like such a normal state and they were expecting something very strange. The zombie-type states you see depicted in movies and on TV are pure fantasy.

How does it feel to be hypnotized?

It feels great! Hypnosis is a natural state that feels just like before you are about to fall asleep at night or in the morning before you wake up, you are not quit asleep you are not quite awake, you are in a kind of a drifting state. You just feel as if you are relaxing in a very comfortable space with your eyes closed. You can hear everything–my voice, the sounds in the room and outside the building, and you are still able to think. Think about it - your unconscious mind uses the same set of ears that your conscious mind hears with! You are aware of your surroundings and in control at all times.

How do I know if I can be hypnotized to stop smoking?

Everyone can be hypnotized but one has to be willing to be hypnotized. All hypnosis is self-hypnosis, which means if you want to do it, you can. The very small minority of people who have difficulty in a session are usually those who don't really want to be hypnotized or are pressured be someone else to go. Sometimes they can’t relax and let go enough (perhaps fearing loss of control, which we know is a myth, or resisting because they were pushed into it) to go with the experience. Some things you can do to increase your ability to go under hypnosis easier and faster are practicing meditation, visualization, and yoga or relaxation techniques. However, everyone of normal intelligence with an IQ 70 or above can be hypnotized.

How much does a smoking cessation session cost?

The cost of our smoking cessation program is very little, especially when you consider what smoking is costing you. Besides the cost of cigarettes, consider how much more money you are spending on things like dry-cleaning, insurance, teeth whitening, increased medical bills and many other related costs. If you want to stop smoking, the cost won't matter. When you decide to be a nonsmoker, it will be like giving yourself a raise of a few thousand dollars per year or like making an investment that keeps returning 400 to 1,000%, year after year. When you stop smoking, you will save more than just money, you will add several good years to your life.

What is included in your stop smoking program?

Everyone that books a stop smoking session also receives 13 additional hypnosis CD’s/mp3’s for FREE($260 value):
1. Weight Loss Hypnosis
2. Improved Study Habits Hypnosis
3. Stress Relief Hypnosis
4. Unstoppable Self Confidence Hypnosis
5. Stop Smoking Hypnosis
6. Power Focus For Concentration Hypnosis
7. Improve Memory Hypnosis
8. Stress & Anxiety Relief Hypnosis
9. Develop Psychic Powers Hypnosis
10. Mind Power Secrets Hypnosis
11. Sounds Of Nature - A Tropical Rainforest
12. Sounds Of Nature - Soothing Waterfalls
13. Procrastination To Motivation Hypnosis

Is the cost of the smoking cessation program tax deductible?

Yes! Check with your tax professional.

How many sessions will I have to sign up for to quit smoking, and how long are the hypnosis sessions?

For most people just one session is enough! About 85% of people who come to our SF office will need just one session and about 15% of people need another session or more support over the phone. With our system, you only come for one session, which lasts about 90 minutes, however we stay with you to make sure that you stay a permanent nonsmoker. That's it! Other smoking cessation programs may require supplements, prescription medications, or NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy). With us, one session is all you'll need to be a nonsmoker. Our system is the most effective smoking cessation system available in San Francisco Bay Area.

What happens if, for whatever reason, I make the mistake of smoking cigarettes again, even if it's in two years?

Our service is guaranteed. If for any reason you need more help feel free to call for support over the phone or book another appointment at no charge. As we mentioned, it does not happen very often but we are here for you if you for as long as it takes for you to be successful and quit smoking permanently.

How soon can I begin realizing the benefits of being a nonsmoker?

Immediately! The first thing you notice is how great you feel about yourself for being a nonsmoker. Within 48 hours, nicotine is eliminated from your body. Within a few days you notice that good food tastes even better. Within a few weeks to six months, your circulation improves. After one year, your risk for heart attack becomes half that of a smoker. The benefits keep accumulating, day after day, month after month, year after year once you stop smoking.

You Can Stop Smoking in 3 Easy Steps:
• Call us NOW: 1.800.YAO.HEAL (800.926.4325) or 415.310.7071
• Make an appointment. We book 1-3 weeks out, so make your appointment TODAY
• Keep That Appointment - From that moment on, your smoking problem is solved

Research in Western countries has found that approximately 3-5% of quit attempts succeed using willpower alone (Hughes et al, 2004)[2]. The British Medical Journal and others have reviewed the evidence regarding which methods are most effective for smokers interested in breaking free of the smoking habit, and concluded that

Nicotine dependence is most effectively treated with a combination of drugs and specialist behavioural support . . .[3]

As detailed in the Statistics section below, multi-session psychological support from a trained counselor, either individually or in groups has been shown in clinical trials to provide the greatest benefit.

An even better chance of success can be obtained by combining medication and psychological support (see below) (USDHHS, 2000).[citation needed] Medication or pharmacological quitting-aids that have shown evidence of effectiveness in clinical trials include medical nicotine replacement patches or gum, the tricyclic anti-depressant nortriptyline[4],bupropion (Zyban, or Quomem in some countries), and the nicotinic partial agonist, varenicline (Chantix in the U.S. and Champix elsewhere).

There are many people and organizations touting what are claimed to be effective methods of helping smokers to stop. Such claims of success are rarely backed up by independent comparative clinical trials or correctly calculated success rates. A separate thorough review of the evidence for each of several methods and aids for stopping smoking is available via the Cochrane Library website, Cochrane Library.[5]

[edit] Hazardous elements of Cigarette smoke

Tobacco smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, many of which have a harmful effect on the body. But the main components of tobacco smoke are nicotine, tar and carbon monoxide.

Nicotine is the element in cigarettes that causes the sensation people become accustomed to and is the component that is addictive – more addictive than opium.

Tar is a mixture of over 1,000 chemicals. It includes a variety of irritants and at least 60 compounds known to cause cancer. The smoke from cigarettes leaves tar deposits in the lungs and respiratory system which are absorbed through the rest of the body.

Carbon monoxide is a poisonous gas present in cigarette smoke. It reduces the amount of oxygen the blood can carry to the body tissues and cells, including the heart. Pregnant women should be especially mindful of the effects of carbon monoxide on the body.

Nicotine has only moderate impact on health, and its negative impact is negligible when compared to tar and carbon monoxide. It is the tar and carbon monoxide which cause the most serious damage to health. Smoking causes one in three of all cancer related deaths, including 90% of lung cancer deaths, 20% of all heart disease deaths and 90% of all deaths from bronchitis and emphysema.

More than half of all smokers will die of illnesses related to smoking. And while most people associate smoking with lung cancer, few people realize that cardiovascular illnesses (heart) make up almost half of all smoking related deaths, due in part to the heavy strain placed on the heart by oxygen-robbing carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke.

[edit] What to expect when you quit

Quitting smoking is notoriously difficult. Approximately half of all attempts to quit smoking actually succeed, and most people who do successfully quit do so only after several attempts.

Common short-term effects of smoking cessation are increased irritability, depression, anxiety, restlessness, insomnia, difficulty concentrating, increased appetite, rhinorrhea, cough, and increased susceptibility to upper respiratory tract infections. Reportedly these symtoms generally last for up to four weeks. Increased appetite for some, though, can continue for more than three months.

These side effects, however, are minor compared to the health benefits of smoking cessation.

[edit] Information for smokers trying to quit

Smoking cessation services, which offer group or individual therapy can help people who want to quit. Some smoking cessation programs employ a combination of coaching, motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioral therapy, and pharmacological counseling.

Few smokers are successful with their very first attempt. Many smokers find it difficult to quit, even in the face of serious smoking-related disease in themselves or close family members or friends. A serious commitment to arresting dependency upon nicotine is essential. The typical effort of a person that finally succeeds is the seventh to fifteenth try. Each attempt is a learning experience that moves them that much closer to their goal of eventual permanent freedom from smoking.

Some studies have concluded that those who do successfully quit smoking can gain weight. "Weight gain is not likely to negate the health benefits of smoking cessation, but its cosmetic effects may interfere with attempts to quit." (Williamson, Madans et al, 1991). Therefore, drug companies researching smoking-cessation medication often measure the weight of the participants in the study.

Major depression may challenge smoking cessation success in women. Quitting smoking is especially difficult during certain phases of the reproductive cycle, phases that have also been associated with greater levels of dysphoria, and subgroups of women who have a high risk of continuing to smoke also have a high risk of developing depression. Since many women who are depressed may be less likely to seek formal cessation treatment, practitioners have a unique opportunity to persuade their patients to quit.[6]

[edit] Methods of quitting smoking
A 21mg dose Nicoderm CQ patch applied to the left arm.

Techniques which can increase smokers' chances of successfully quitting are:

* Quitting "cold turkey": abrupt cessation of all nicotine use as opposed to tapering or gradual stepped-down nicotine weaning. It is the quitting method used by 80[7] to 90%[8] of all long-term successful quitters.
* Smoking-cessation support and counseling is often offered over the internet, over the phone quitlines (e.g. 1-800-QUIT-NOW), or in person.
* Nicotine replacement therapy when used for less than eight weeks helped with withdrawal symptoms, cravings, and urges (for example, transdermal nicotine patches, gum, lozenges, sprays, and inhalers). Nicotine replacement therapy doubles the smoker's chances of quitting successfully.
* The antidepressant bupropion, marketed under the brand name Zyban, helps with withdrawal symptoms, cravings, and urges. Bupropion is contraindicated in epilepsy, seizure disorder; anorexia/bulimia (eating disorders), patients use of psychosis drugs (MAO inhibitors) within 14 days, patients undergoing abrupt discontinuation of ethanol or sedatives (including benzodiazepines such as Valium)[9]
* Nicotinic receptor antagonist varenicline (Chantix) (Champix in the UK)
* Recently, an injection given multiple times over the course of several months, which primes the immune system to produce antibodies which attach to nicotine and prevent it from reaching the brain, has shown promise in helping smokers quit. However, this approach is still in the experimental stages. [1]

* Hypnosis clinical trials studying hypnosis as a method for smoking cessation have been inconclusive. (The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2006, Issue 3.)
* Herbal preparations such as Kava and Chamomile
* Acupuncture clinical trials have shown that acupuncture's effect on smoking cessation is equal to that of sham/placebo acupuncture. (See Cochrane Review)
* Attending a self-help group such as Nicotine Anonymous[2] and electronic self-help groups such as Stomp It Out[3]
* Laser therapy based on acupuncture principles but without the needles.
* Quit meters: Small computer programs that keep track of quit statistics such as amount of "quit-time", cigarettes not smoked, and money saved.
* Self-help books.
* Spirituality Spiritual beliefs and practices may help some smokers quit.[4]
* Smokeless tobacco: Snus is widely used in Sweden, and although it is much healthier than smoking, something which is reflected in the low cancer rates for Swedish men, there are still some concerns about its health impact. [5]
* Herbal and aromatherapy "natural" program formulations.
* Vaporizer: heats to 410°F. or less, compared with 1500°F./860°C. in the tip of a cigarette when drawn upon; eliminates carbon monoxide and other combustion toxins.
* "FAUX Cigarette" or similar commercial products which can be used as alternative to smoking as well as cessation.
* E-cigarette (Ruyan and others): Shaped like a cigar or cigarette, this device contains a rechargeable battery and a heating element that vaporizes liquid nicotine (and other flavorings) from an insertable cartridge, at lower initial cost than a vaporizer but with the same advantages including significantly reducing tar and carbon monoxide.
* Screened single-toke utensil (minitoke)[10]: smoking-reduction utensil substitutes 25-mg. single servings for the heavily advertised trap of each time lighting an entire 700-mg. commercial cigarette.
* Smoking herb substitutions (non-tobacco)[6]

* Great American Smokeout is an annual event that invites smokers to quit for one day, hoping they will be able to extend this forever.

[edit] Physiological & Psychological Effects

Upon smoking cessation, the body begins to rid itself of naturally foreign substances introduced to the body through smoking. These include substances in the blood such as nicotine and carbon monoxide, and also accumulated particulate matter and tar from the lungs. As a consequence, though the smoker may begin coughing more, cardiovascular efficiency increases.

Many of the effects of smoking cessation can be seen as landmarks, often cited by smoking cessation services, by which a smoker can encourage him or herself to keep going. Some are of a certain nature, such as those of nicotine clearing the bloodstream completely in 48 to 72 hours, and cotinine (a metabolite of nicotine) clearing the bloodstream within 10 to 14 days. Other effects, such as improved circulation, are more subjective in nature, and as a result less definite timescales are often cited.

As with other addictions, apart from the dependence of the body on chemical substances, a smoking addiction is often related to everyday lifestyle events, which can include thinking deeply, eating, drinking tea, coffee or alcohol, or general socializing. As a result, smokers may miss the act of smoking particularly at these times, and this may increase the difficulty inherent in a cessation attempt. As a result of a lower dopamine response from nicotine receptors in the brain, a degree of depression may ensue, along with somatic responses where the smoker feels less able to perform the day to day tasks previously related to smoking without having the usual cigarette to accompany them.

High stress often results when heavily addicted individuals or long-time smokers attempt to quit, in part because their everyday lifestyle events have been altered and they may miss the social interaction normally associated with the habit.

Smoking cessation will almost always lead to a longer and healthier life. Stopping in early adulthood can add up to 10 years of healthy life and stopping in one's sixties can still add three years of healthy life (Doll et al, 2004). Stopping smoking is associated with better mental health and spending less of one's life with diseases of old age.

The immediate effects of smoking cessation include:

* Within 20 minutes blood pressure returns to its normal level
* After 8 hours oxygen levels return to normal
* After 24 hours carbon monoxide levels in the lungs return to those of a non-smoker and the mucus begins to clear
* After 48 hours nicotine leaves the body and tastebuds are improved
* After 72 hours breathing becomes easier
* After 2-12 weeks, circulation improves
* After 5 years, the risk of heart attack falls to about half that of a smoker
* After 10 years, the chance of lung cancer is almost the same as a non-smoker.

[edit] Information for healthcare professionals

Several studies have found that smoking cessation advice is not always given in primary care in patients aged 65 and older,[11][12] despite the significant health benefits which can ensue in the older population.[13]

One way to assist smokers who want to quit is through a telephone quitline which is easily available to all. Professionally run quitlines may help less dependent smokers, but those people who are more heavily dependent on nicotine should seek local smoking cessation services, where they exist, or assistance from a knowledgeable health professional, where they do not. Some evidence suggests that better results are achieved when counseling support and medication are used simultaneously.[citation needed] Quitting with a group of other people who want to quit is also a method of getting support, available through many organizations.

Health professionals may follow the "five As" with every smoking patient they come in contact with:[14]

1. Ask about smoking
2. Advise quitting
3. Assess current willingness to quit
4. Assist in the quit attempt
5. Arrange timely follow-up

[edit] Statistics

A U.S Surgeon General's report includes tables setting forth success rates for various methods, some of which are listed below, ranked by success rate and identified by the Surgeon General's table number.[15]

* Quitting programs combining counseling or support elements with a prescription for Bupropion SR (Zyban/Wellbutrin) found success rates were increased to 30.5 percent, (Surgeon General's Table 25).

* Quitting programs involving 91 to 300 minutes of contact time increased six month success rates to 28 percent, regardless of other quitting method included Surgeon General's Report Table 13, page 59]

* Quitting programs involving 8 or more treatment sessions increased six month success rates to 24.7 percent (Surgeon General's Table 14, page 60)

* High intensity counseling of greater than 10 minutes increased six month success rates to 22 percent whether added to any other quitting method, nicotine replacement, or cold turkey Surgeon General's Report Table 12, page 58]

* A physician's advice to quit can increase quitting odds by 30 percent to ten percent at six months Surgeon General's Report Table 11, page 57]
* Seven percent of those who used over-the-counter nicotine patch and gum products quit for at least six months

[edit] See also

* Allen Carr
* Anti-tobacco movement in Nazi Germany
* Nicotine Anonymous
* Social marketing
* Health promotion
* NicVAX
* Nicotine replacement therapy
* Tobacco cessation clinic
* Tobacco and health
* Vaporizer
* Ruyan

[edit] Notes

1. ^ World Health Organization, Tobacco Free Initiative
2. ^ Only about half of all attempts to quit succeed, and most people who do succeed do so only after several attempts. [http://pt.wkhealth.com/pt/re/addi/abstract.00008514-200401000-00011.htm;jsessionid=Ln1CPBJSQnLGxLTKch2YGz6SdqvQQ2bZYdmbqwThvc0f9JVtT21v!2126095447!181195629!8091!-1 Shape of the relapse curve and long-term abstinence among untreated smokers] Hughes, John R.; Keely, Josue; Naud, Shelly; Addiction. 99(1):29-38, January 2004 (pdf)
3. ^ Managing smoking cessation | Paul Aveyard, National Institute of Health research career scientist, Robert West, professor of health psychology and director of tobacco studies | Clinical Review | BMJ 2007; 335:37-41 (7 July) | doi:10.1136/bmj.39252.591806.47 | http://bmj.bmjjournals.com/cgi/content/full/335/7609/37?fmr
4. ^ Studies have shown that nicotine replacement therapy (nicotine patches, gum, inhalers, etc) double the chance of successfully quitting. Nortriptyline As A Smoking Cessation Aid - Analysis Of Clinical Studies
5. ^ Cochrane Topic Review Group: Tobacco Addiction http://www.cochrane.org/reviews/en/topics/94.html
6. ^ The impact of depression on smoking cessation in women.
7. ^ Doran CM, Valenti L, Robinson M, Britt H, Mattick RP. Smoking status of Australian general practice patients and their attempts to quit. Addict Behav. 2006 May;31(5):758-66. PMID 16137834
8. ^ American Cancer Society. "Cancer Facts & Figures 2003".
9. ^ Charles F. Lacy et al, LEXI-COMP'S Drug Information Handbook 12th edition. Ohio, USA,2004
10. ^ ""Smoking reduction may lead to unexpected quitting"". Retrieved on 2007-12-27.
11. ^ Maguire CP, Ryan J, Kelly A, O'Neill D, Coakley D, Walsh JB. Do patient age and medical condition influence medical advice to stop smoking? Age Ageing. 2000 May;29(3):264-6. PMID 10855911
12. ^ Ossip-Klein DJ, McIntosh S, Utman C, Burton K, Spada J, Guido J. Smokers ages 50+: who gets physician advice to quit? Prev Med. 2000 Oct;31(4):364-9. PMID 11006061
13. ^ Ferguson J, Bauld L, Chesterman J, Judge K. The English smoking treatment services: one-year outcomes. Addiction. 2005 Apr;100 Suppl 2:59-69. PMID 15755262
14. ^ Le Foll B, George TP (2007). "Treatment of tobacco dependence: integrating recent progress into practice". CMAJ 177 (11): 1373–80. doi:10.1503/cmaj.070627. PMID 18025429. http://www.cmaj.ca/cgi/content/full/177/11/1373.
15. ^ Clinical Practice Guideline Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Service June 2000 http://surgeongeneral.gov/tobacco/treating_tobacco_use.pdf 28 percent

[edit] References

* Doll R, Peto R, Boreham J, Sutherland I. Mortality in relation to smoking: 50 years' observations on male British doctors. Bmj 2004;328(7455):1519.
* Helgason AR, Tomson T, Lund KE, Galanti R, Ahnve S, Gilljam H. Factors related to abstinence in a telephone helpline for smoking cessation. European J Public Health 2004: 14;306-310.
* Henningfield J, Fant R, Buchhalter A, Stitzer M. "Pharmacotherapy for nicotine dependence". CA Cancer J Clin 55 (5): 281–99; quiz 322–3, 325. PMID 16166074. Full text
* Hughes JR, Keely J, Naud S. Shape of the relapse curve and long-term abstinence among untreated smokers. Addiction 2004;99(1):29-38.
* Hutter H.P. et al. Smoking Cessation at the Workplace:1 year success of short seminars. International Archives of Occupational & Environmental Health. 2006;79:42-48.
* Marks, D.F. The QUIT FOR LIFE Programme:An Easier Way To Quit Smoking and Not Start Again. Leicester: British Psychological Society. 1993.
* Marks, D.F. & Sykes, C. M. Randomized controlled trial of cognitive behavioural therapy for smokers living in a deprived area of London: outcome at one-year follow-up

Psychology, Health & Medicine. 2005;7:17-24.

* Marks, D.F. Overcoming Your Smoking Habit. London: Robinson.2005.
* Peters MJ, Morgan LC. The pharmacotherapy of smoking cessation. Med J Aust 2002;176:486-490. Fulltext. PMID 12065013.
* Silagy C, Lancaster T, Stead L, Mant D, Fowler G. Nicotine replacement therapy for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2004(3):CD000146.
* USDHHS. Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research Quality; 2000.
* West R. Tobacco control: present and future. Br Med Bull 2006;77-78:123-36.
* Williamson, DF, Madans, J, Anda, RF, Kleinman, JC, Giovino, GA, Byers, T Smoking cessation and severity of weight gain in a national cohort N Engl J Med 1991 324: 739-745
* World Health Organization, Tobacco Free Initiative
* Zhu S-H, Anderson CM, Tedeschi GJ, et al. Evidene of real-world effectiveness of a telephone quitline$for smokers. N Engl J Med 2002;347(14):1087-93.

[edit] External links

* Quit Now - The Australian National Tobacco Campaign
* American Cancer Society Quit Tobacco Resources
* National Cancer Institution Online guide to quitting
* University of Wisconsin Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention
* Columbia University School of Nursing Smoking Cessation Portal

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